I am not a seasoned international traveller.
My first two visits to Europe were tours with the Smith College Alumnae Chorus, one to Sicily and one to Slovenia. Everything was organized and arranged in advance, so I didn’t need to think about much of anything, other than a few meals here and there. We had our own charter buses, so we didn’t even need to navigate in the places we visited.
At the moment, I am in London, visiting daughter E, granddaughter ABC, and E’s spouse L and L’s parents, with whom they are living. My spouse B and other daughter T are here, too.
Given that this is my first trip abroad that was not an organized tour, I am finding the nuts and bolts of travel a bit daunting. We flew from Newark to Heathrow, two large and totally unfamiliar airports. We took a train to Paddington Station, where E met us to shepherd us to another train and then a walk to their home. Later in the day, when our hotel check-in time arrived, it took both of L’s family’s cars to get us and the luggage the two-ish miles (3km) to our hotel.
Most of our to-ing and fro-ing has been by bus or train. London has a very comprehensive system of public transit, which is great because it is such a huge city. Unfortunately, I am a) not used to having public transit available and B) intimidated by large cities, so I am grateful to have family with me to keep me on the right track, at least most of the time.
As in our trip to Slovenia, B is acting as the photographer, so I hope to share some posts with photos in the coming days.
(I promise not to be in central London near Parliament on election day, December 12. That could become entirely too exciting for someone like me who isn’t used to raucous crowds.)